Last week we reported on Google's discovery of an old iPhone vulnerability – now fixed by Apple – that enabled malicious websites to steal data from thousands of users over a two-year period.

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Google described these attacks in its original blog post as "indiscriminate," however a report over the weekend by TechCrunch suggests the websites were part of a state-backed attack that specifically targeted Uyghur Muslims.

The websites were part of a campaign to target the religious group by infecting an iPhone with malicious code simply by visiting a booby-trapped web page. In gaining unfettered access to the iPhone's software, an attacker could read a victim's messages, passwords, and track their location in near-real time.

According to TechCrunch's sources, the Chinese government was allegedly behind the malicious websites, which also infected non-Uygurs who unintentionally accessed these domains because they were indexed in Google search. The FBI is said to have alerted Google to ask for the sites to be removed from its index to prevent infections.

Beijing has long sought to suppress the ethnic minority Uyghur community in the country's Xinjiang state, with brutal crackdowns in the 1980s and 90s leading to significant numbers of Uyghurs fleeing China to seek asylum.

In the past year, at least one million Uighurs have been detained in internment camps, according to the United Nations human rights committee. Beijing claims the centers across Xinjiang are for "vocational training," but a US Congressional hearing on the camps characterized them as "political re-education" centers.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Tag: China

Top Rated Comments

rizzo41999 Avatar
49 months ago
God, that government is just a force of pure evil.

Tiananmen Square 1989
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Precursor Avatar
49 months ago
Someone tell me how the Uighur Muslims can have a longer claim on the territory of the Chinese than the Chinese (in fact substitute the Uigher Muslim for any other people having a longer claim on China than the Chinese)?

Not possible.
Claim in China? What are you talking about?
Uighurs have been living in that region for thousands of years, not the whole country. Who said Uighurs claim anything? They’re being targeted because 1) They’re not Han Chinese 2) They’re not Chinese
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
unobtainium Avatar
49 months ago
Someone tell me how the Uighur Muslims can have a longer claim on the territory of the Chinese than the Chinese (in fact substitute the Uigher Muslim for any other people having a longer claim on China than the Chinese)?

Not possible.
lol what. The Han Chinese are from a different area of Eurasia. They never lived in Uighur territory until very recent times. In fact they hardly live there now. They just control it politically, and are starting to move Han Chinese there to try to change the demographics.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
zombierunner Avatar
49 months ago
Apple should pull out of China completely. Paying 1100 anyway for a phone. What’s another 100.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
retta283 Avatar
49 months ago
The other Great Powers of the world missed so many chances to destroy/weaken the Communists in China, and this is the result. A great power that is completely tyrannical and oppressive on a scale not seen since the Stalinist era.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
itsmilo Avatar
49 months ago
China is what the Stasi in East Germany would have liked to be. The whole country is sick. Just like Nazi Germany, the world just watches until they play with too much fire
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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